Biomedicine: exercise can lower blood pressure, but a new study has found that when people gargle with antibacterial mouthwash, the effect of exercise on lowering blood pressure will be greatly reduced. This shows that oral bacteria play a unique role in maintaining blood pressure.
In the study, conducted by the University of Plymouth in the UK and the Spanish gene management center, the researchers asked 23 healthy adults to run on a treadmill for 30 minutes. After exercise, they were asked to gargle with antibacterial mouthwash or placebo for 30 minutes, 60 minutes and 90 minutes respectively, and their blood pressure changes were observed.
The results showed that when participants rinsed with placebo, their systolic blood pressure decreased by an average of 5.2 mmHg after 1 hour of exercise; When gargling with antibacterial mouthwash, participants’ systolic blood pressure decreased by an average of only 2.0 mmHg after one hour of exercise. The experimental results show that after using antibacterial mouthwash, the antihypertensive effect will be lost by 60% after 1 hour of exercise, and the effect will be completely lost after 2 hours.
Nitric oxide produced by the body during exercise can lead to vasodilation. The lead author of the study, Dr. Raul bescos of the University of Plymouth, explained that nitric oxide is degraded into nitrate compounds in the body, which can be absorbed by salivary glands and excreted in the mouth through saliva. Some bacteria in the mouth will convert nitrate into nitrite. After nitrite enters the circulatory system, it will be reduced to nitric oxide, which can maintain vasodilation. Therefore, it can continue to reduce blood pressure after exercise.
The researchers said that the new research shows that oral bacteria are crucial to the synthesis of nitrite, just like the “keys” to dilate blood vessels. If these “keys” are removed, nitrite cannot be produced. This is directly reflected in the fact that when using antibacterial mouthwash, the nitrite level in the blood of participants did not increase after exercise; When gargling with a placebo, participants had elevated levels of nitrite in their blood.
The researchers suggest that medical staff should consider the oral environment when providing exercise and treatment suggestions for patients with hypertension. Next, they will further analyze the oral bacterial composition of people at high risk of cardiovascular disease to find out the factors that directly affect cardiovascular health. The relevant research results have been published in the American Journal of free radical biology and medicine.